Although grounded in the African-American church, the transcendent power of gospel eclipses religion through the sheer visceral power of the music to induce listeners to shake it mercilessly while being transported to another plane. One of the jewels of gospel royalty, the Mighty Clouds of Joy, have been raising a righteous ruckus for more than a half century, led by the miraculous, raspy, soul-drenched howl of Joe Ligon. The traditional scintillating harmonies and call-and-response patterns are still the core of the Mighty Clouds' music. But over the years the group repeatedly has been an innovator: adding full instrumentation, choreographed moves worthy of the Temptations, elements of funk and even disco, and collaborating with secular artists. The current seven-piece Clouds have more than enough power to raise the Dakota's roof and inspire more secular praising of Jesus than a dozen Tea Party rallies. $40 at 7 p.m.; $25 at 9 p.m.
Wednesdays, Thursdays. Starts: April 13. Continues through April 14, 2011